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Contest: To find clean-technology innovators to do business in Nova Scotia, Innovacorp ran a competition. The prize included $100,000. A local company won, but the competition created links with global innovators, including a Dutch company now negotiating a move to the province. Percy Paris (R), Minister of Nova Scotia Economic and Rural Development presented winner Mather Carscallen (L) with his prize in April.

Courtesy Innovacorp/Craig Buckley

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Job fairs: In a recent example of this widely used approach, Saskatchewan took a contingent of immigration specialists and employers to Ireland in March to help recruit highly skilled workers. The team attended job fairs in Dublin and Cork and at last count, employers had extended offers for 282 positions.

Shane O'Neill/Fennells/Courtesy Fennell Photography - Dublin

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Overseas recruitment: Last summer, Winkler, Man., (pictured left) set up an office in Berlin to interview potential immigrants who were interested in setting up small businesses, but who had no personal contacts in the province and weren't able to make an exploratory visit. They interviewed applicants from more than 10 countries from as far away as Latvia and Kazakhstan. The city of 11,000 is expecting the first wave from that trip to arrive this summer.

Courtesy Darlis Collinge

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Supportive networking: The Professional Immigrant Networks (PINs) website is designed to create connections between immigrants, employers and community agencies, such as the Chinese Professionals Association of Canada or the Latin American MBA Alumni Network. The website launched on Feb. 9, 2012 in association with the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council.

Jeff Vinnick/Professional Immigrant Networks website

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Promoting Canada's potential: C100 brings successful Canadian expatriates together with IT and start-up professionals. This non-profit, member-driven organization puts Canadian ingenuity on display at their conferences and events, exposing tech entrepreneurs to the burgeoning talent and business potential in Canada.

Courtesy C100/Kris Krug

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